You end up with communities that can be even more conservative that the typical white evangelical church: While many Asian countries have made strides in this area, patriarchal values still permeate Asian cultures to varying degrees, and these values can shape how Asian clergy interpret the Bible. And many of the ones that do in theory, I suspect, have no female pastors in practice. Asian Americans are often silent on issues of racism for a number of reasons: This tendency can be especially pervasive in Asian churches, where fear of disrupting the community can make individuals especially reluctant to bring up issues that could be controversial.
And since Asian cultures tend to be more hierarchical than Western ones, church leaders may cherry-pick verses about obeying authority to invalidate the idea that the police or the government might ever be wrong. So if you want to talk about systemic injustice at an Asian church, you might not find many willing conversation partners, and you might be silenced altogether.
The next step for many of us, then, is to find other churches that care about these issues. But these communities are usually predominantly white or predominantly black, though these churches are rarely progressive on LGBT issues , and that can carry its own baggage.
It can be hard to be the only Asian American person around, or one of only a few, both because of how you stand out and because you have to do so much more work to be heard and understood. The fear of being misunderstood, or of misrepresenting an entire culture, or of having to defend how you do things is real and exhausting.
So the progressive Asian American Christian may find themselves feeling alone and even alienated, again, this time because of their cultural identity. My progressive values and my faith are inextricably intertwined. So I stick around. And I know that people who get both are out there. I know a lot of them, actually; I made a list, and what started as a trickle became a flood.
My one-on-one interactions with these folks are normalizing and life-giving; these meals and coffee dates are now my spiritual home.
S Koreans turn to dating apps and matchmakers to find partner
And I know more of you are out there. Some of you are sitting in the pews at Redeemer and Pacific Crossroads, at New Song and GrX, in the English ministries of the immigrant churches where you grew up or where you work with students. Or maybe, in spite of your ideological differences, this church is still the best option among the ones you have available to you. I get that too.
Welcome to NAAP. The Premier Arab-American Network.
If the only options I knew of were to dignify these people or be a Christian, and these options appeared to be mutually exclusive, I probably would have chosen the former too. Where we could be fully known and fully understood every once in a while. Where we could feel a little less lonely. This piece originally appeared on The Salt Collective.
Tap here to turn on desktop notifications to get the news sent straight to you. Who does that any more? I needed to meet this guy," recalled the year-old freelance theatre producer with a laugh. After several rounds of shortlisting from a list of potential dates through the free app Norang Narang Korean for "you and me" , they finally got to exchange contact details and arranged to meet the next day.
But Ms Chung was anything but impressed when her date, a freelance storyboard artist for TV commercials, showed up wearing a Burberry trench coat and driving a Range Rover, as if flaunting his wealth. Then we sat down to talk, and he realised I'm not the materialistic sort. I was more interested in his work, like he's shot a short film, and his plans, and what's he like as a person," she recalled. After he drove her home, she bought him a cup of coffee to thank him - a gesture that surprised him as most girls he had dated expected him to pay for everything. That was the beginning of a relationship that culminated in their getting married in January last year, on the first anniversary of their first date.
Browse South Korea Christian Singles by Province/State:
Ms Chung and her husband, Mr Song Kyung Heub, 47, are part of a growing number of couples who met with professional help - be they matchmaking agencies or dating apps. Even the South Korean government, eager to boost the country's low fertility rate of 1. The median age for marriage has risen in the past few decades to hit Singapore's Senior Minister of State Josephine Teo, in Seoul last month to study the country's marriage and parenthood policies, noted how youth in both South Korea and Singapore have delayed marriage in recent years.
She also noted, however, that the Koreans were more proactive in looking for love and embracing commercial matchmaking agencies. In a Facebook post titled "Dating - Gangnam Style", she urged single Singaporeans to start early, like the Koreans, and be open to getting professional help. There are some 1, dating agencies in South Korea, which is home to a population of 50 million. Duo, which claims to be the largest dating agency in the country, has a membership of 31, It has made over 33, successful matches that led to marriages in the past two decades.
It uses a computerised system to crunch detailed information provided by members, including occupation, annual income, car and property owned, and residential zone, and conducts background checks to verify the information before pairing up members. It makes as many as 17, matches a month.
Why Korean American Churches Need a Makeover | Hyphen Magazine
Duo chief executive officer Park Soo Kyung said the firm's motto is to pair singles with the aim of making "happy marriages". It has managers who talk to members to further define their ideal partner and dating coaches to advise them on how to carry themselves in order to win over their dream man or woman. A typical male member is a year-old university graduate who earns 40 million won a year, while a typical female member is a year-old degree holder earning 30 million won a year.
Matchmakers have traditionally played a key role in Korean society, said Ms Park. That's why they relied on matchmakers to collect detailed information and recommend a suitable match," she said. Marriage in modern times has become a pursuit of free love and individual happiness, leading to the wane of the professional matchmaker.
However, with young people now becoming more pragmatic in their attitude towards marriage, they "would use information from matchmakers to find their ideal partners as they feel it is a rational thing to do", said Ms Park. She added that as getting married and starting a family require big sums of money, young people don't want to risk going into it without knowing their partner's socio-economic background and financial status - information which dating agencies can provide.
People care more about economic status and what university one graduated from, and that could be the reason why they are turning to dating agencies that have a lot of that data.
One concern, however, is that dating agencies rank members based on criteria that are "heavily weighted on materialistic indicators and aggravate gender discrimination", Prof Kim said. For example, some occupations with looks as a prerequisite, like flight stewardess, are ranked higher. Another reason for using dating agencies is that social circles have shrunk, with more people preferring to spend their free time alone, often glued to their smart devices. Young people are less able to rely on friends and family to fix them up with a date, unlike in the past.
Then, one could go for "sogaeting", a one-on-one blind date with a friend's friend, or "meeting", a small gathering of six to eight singles who typically break the ice by playing some kind of drinking game.
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